If you travel on South African roads, you will no doubt have seen the almost ubiquitous “Think Bike” stickers on cars, trucks and bikes alike. Bumper stickers, banners, stickers on bikes, branded t-shirts, and reflective vests all serve to help make the Think Bike logo well-known. The idea is that every time anyone sees the Think Bike logo, they will think about bikes for a few seconds - and that includes bikers and cyclists.
But apart from a momentary reminder to look out for bikes, what is Think Bike really about?
The answer is that it is much more than stickers – they are merely the most visible manifestations of South Africa’s biggest and most successful motorcycle and cycling safety campaign.
Think Bike is a mindset!
With the aid of its members and supporters, including some of South Africa’s leading corporates, Think Bike would like to become the country’s most recognised brand for all things related to biking and cycling safety.
Think Bike also uses other channels to create awareness, such as radio, TV interviews, newspaper and magazine articles. Hosting stalls run by volunteers at community events such as the AMID bike show in Gauteng, Classic Car and Bike Show in Cape Town and assisting at the annual Toy Runs held around South Africa all helps towards Think Bike being able to spread the word. Marshalling cycling events, including high profile rides such as the 94.7 Cycle Challenge and The Cape Cape Roleur tour also allows the campaign to provide a safe passage to the entrants.
What Think Bike isn’t is a law enforcement agency and supports the agencies tasked to address legal issues. While Think Bike doesn’t condone the breaking of the law by 2 wheel road users (from speeding to removal of number plates to drinking and driving) we cannot be prescriptive. What Think Bike believes is that through education, the choices made by the individual biker or cyclist will be more focused on their own safety and Think Bike would prefer to be seen as offering social platforms where bikers and cyclists can find sound advice, on which to base their educated choices regarding their conduct while riding.
Think Bike is a registered not for profit company managed by a Board of Directors, elected by campaign members annually. The brand “Think Bike” is a registered trademark, and the Board of Directors are custodians of this brand.
The campaign’s various working portfolios are voluntarily headed up by campaign members that are appointed and guided by the Board of Directors. Portfolios such as Education, Events, Marshalling, Membership and Sponsorship which are just some of the key areas that are necessary to the functioning of the campaign are are very dependent on having willing volunteers. The NPC has no employees or brick and mortar offices and volunteers are not rewarded financially for their time or efforts.
The main communication tool between its members and supporters is Think Bike’s active Internet forum, on which subjects ranging from bike safety to road hazards to general bike-related topics are discussed in hundreds of posts per day. The forum is loosely moderated, meaning that while users are generally allowed to express themselves freely, moderators will step in when required.